How Terra Firma Is Solving Ageing Access Infrastructure In Victoria’s Premier Tourist Attraction

Penguin Parade Boardwalk Upgrade 

You’re probably familiar with the experience of walking along a bushland track to access one of Australia’s many beaches and coastal locations – often crossing a boardwalk, ramp or wooden stairway to reach the water. Access infrastructure is an overlooked feature of many beach and coastal locations. However, maintaining these ageing structures is an ongoing problem for park and council authorities.

Ageing public access infrastructure – a public safety issue

The recent introduction of new disability access guidelines and the evolution of bushfire ratings have further highlighted the importance of the functionality and condition of public boardwalks and ramps. When ageing walkways are made of wood, covered in chicken wire, and located in bushland by a beach, maintenance and access issues are further compounded.

Many of these walkways were built in the 1980s and 90s and are showing signs of decay or reaching the end of their lifespan. As traditional wooden boardwalks age, their surfaces lose integrity and can become hazardous. Although these structures looked great when they were built, nearly 40 years later they don’t always meet bushfire ratings and are now losing integrity. One of the main issues is surfaces that can become slick in wet conditions. The traditional chicken wire anti-slip treatment becomes less and less effective over time and can become a trip hazard when it detaches from the wooden surface.

Partnering with Phillip Island Nature Parks

Phillip Island Nature Parks is ticking all the boxes to ensure Penguin Parade will continue to be Victoria’s premier regional tourist attraction long into the future. The walkways at this iconic location were beginning to show wear and tear due to their age, heavy use, and exposed location. Terra Firma is excited to have been chosen to supply the product of choice to modernise the inclined sections of the Penguin Parade walkway. With a focus that goes beyond products and solutions and centres on relationships and end users, Terra Firma looks forward to bringing its expertise to this ongoing access upgrade program. We care about building trustworthy relationships with our partners, and the Phillip Island Nature Parks is no exception.

FRP composites – the perfect material for outdoor infrastructure

TerraGrate FRP has the highest slip-resistance rating possible for pedestrian surfaces (AS4586 rating P5), making it ideal for exposed, inclined areas such as a portion of the main Phillip Island Penguin Parade walkway and bathroom access.

Several features that make Terra Firma’s TerraGrate perfect for these types of locations:

  • TerraGrate FRP is lightweight, making it easy to transport and handle on site.
  • TerraGrate FRP doesn’t rot or corrode, unlike traditional wood and metal, requiring less maintenance.
  • TerraGrate FRP is also fire-resistant and can be installed onto existing sub-structures using simple hand tools, which means no ‘hot works’ are required in sensitive coastal environments.
  • Most importantly – TerraGrate FRP looks incredible!

Phillip Island Nature Parks is ticking all the boxes to ensure Penguin Parade will continue to be Victoria’s premier regional tourist attraction long into the future.

From design to construction Terra Firma offer composites solutions for every problem – explore Terra Firma’s TerraGrate FRP solutions.